That damnable doubt machine.

Cecilia Tomori

Cecilia Tomori (John Hopkins University)

Scientists: don’t feed the doubt machine.

On the ABC Radio National – The Science Show with Robyn Williams


Download Scientists: don’t feed the doubt machine (21.32 MB)

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Cecilia Tomori grew tired of lies and distortions which too often swirl around as scientists seek the truth. The doubt machine has been around for years. The strategies and patterns have been documented and recur across industries such as tobacco, fossil fuels, pharmaceuticals, food and more. Tomori has come up against the doubt machine in her own work in false claims that undermine breastfeeding to increase sales of formula milk. Recently we’ve all seen the doubt machine in full light, cranking out falsehoods in climate science, and now with the COVID pandemic, including assertions about ‘herd immunity’. Cecilia Tomori thinks scientists can do more, taking more care with how they present certain arguments in public. So she wrote a plea to scientists, published in Nature.

Scientists: don’t feed the doubt machine – Nature 2nd November 2021

Cecilia Tomori
Associate Professor
John Hopkins School of Nursing
Director of Global Public Health and Community Health
Bloomberg School of Public Health
Johns Hopkins University
Baltimore, Maryland USA

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REmember ‘The Merchants of Doubt’ . Remember Marian Wilkinson’s ‘Carbon Club’.

Big oil all talk, no action on climate change? Researchers say they’ve got the proof

The world’s highest-polluting oil companies such as Shell, ExxonMobil, and BP are promising big but delivering very little on climate change, according to damning new research.

And there is so much reason for us to be angry about their actions and their inactions. They will do what the loop holes in laws will let them get away with. And too often backed by governments and subsidized by us.
Note this article by Peter Milne for the journal Boiling Cold,

About decommissioning and the costs of insufficient regulation for the nation’s future


WA onshore and coastal oil & gas clean up to cost billions
Santos – its advertisements on Australian television show nothing of this.

Santos and Chevron, through Varanus and Barrow Islands, have a big part to play in the clean up of 1000 oil and gas wells in WA, with about 300 ready to be plugged now

Peter Milne

Sep 1, 2021 • 5 min read

And now Woodside is being supported by the Federal Coalition government to develop a LNG – really methane – project, the Scarborough Project in the sea off our NW coast.

Thank you Sinanen, this Japanese energy giant

Australian company, Sweetman, is ‘greenwashing’. It calls itself Sweetman Renewables – calls logging of our native forests for wood chip for electricity ‘biomass’.

Last year, Sweetman announced it planned to export 60,000 tonnes of woodchips from Newcastle to burn in Japanese power stations.

“Deplorable” — that’s how Japanese energy giant Sinanen described an attempt to tie it to a plan to burn Australian native forests in Japanese power stations. 

Woodchip company Sweetman told the media they had signed contracts with Japanese energy companies, including Sinanen, to burn native forest “biomass” for electricity.  

Working with Friends of the Earth Japan, the NSW Nature Conservation Council discovered that this claim was untrue and potentially misled investors and the public. 

Sinanen chief executive Masaki Yamazaki wrote to the Nature Conservation Council stating:

“We don’t/will not have any contract with Sweetman on wood chips supply. We deplore the announcement that Sweetman had signed an agreement with us (Sinanen Holdings) to import wood chips.”

If that happened, the New South Wales North Coast forests would be flogged even harder, destroying the habitat of koalas, gliders, birds and other animals — all for a few minutes of electricity.

Sweetman calls itself ‘Sweetman Renewables’ ‘The company has closed a deal on the purchase of the 100-year-old sawmill business, all assets and real estate at the historic Millfield site in the NSW Hunter Valley.] Our Coalition government doesn’t seem to care.

Australia’s Coalition government is not willing to take Federal action to prevent extinction of plants and animals. Check how its Members of Parliament voted.

Thank heavens for watch dogs like the NSW Nature Conservation Council and the Friends of the Earth Japan and this international collaboration for our survival.

Japan’s goal to reduce emissions might not be sufficient but at least they do have a 2030 target for some areas. Australia had no 2030 target in the plan it took to Glasgow!

Three cheers for our Nature Conservation Council investigating these claims.  

The Nature Conservation Council has referred Sweetman to the Australian Securities and Investment Commission, which is now assessing the company’s behaviour. We must make them aware of Sweetman’s destructive woodchipping plans.    

It’s a revelation that strikes at the heart of this deplorable industry, and will raise the attention of potential investors and the corporate regulator. 

Our investigations team are digging into Sweetman because if Sweetman’s plans succeed, it would drive a doubling of native forest logging in NSW. 

The Nature Conservation Council will continue to work with Australian and Japanese environmentalists to expose this proposal and ensure it never happens.

We are targeting investors, authorities, customers, consumers and the public.  

Already, the Port of Newcastle, Sinanen, and the City of Newcastle have all distanced themselves from this destructive proposal

Thank you to the Nature Conservation Council of NSW and Friends of the Earth Japan.

Friends of the Earth International, Secretariat, P.O.Box 19199, 1000 GD Amsterdam, The Netherlands, Phone +31 (0)20 6221369.

If only the Australian Coalition government would prepare the national environmental and biological diversity legislation required by the Graeme Samuel Report about the state of the ‘not fit for purpose’ 1999 -2000 legislation still conveniently being used by this pro fossil fuel government.